Marriage

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 3rd May 2019.

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Photo of Martin Vickers Martin Vickers Conservative, Cleethorpes

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether the Government plans to (a) restrict or (b) remove the charitable status of Churches and other faith-based organisations who express and practise historic orthodox beliefs on the doctrine of marriage.

Photo of Mims Davies Mims Davies Assistant Whip (HM Treasury), The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

To be a charity, institutions, including Churches and other faith-based organisations in England and Wales, must meet the legal test for charitable status set out in the Charities Act 2011. This requires the institution to have a wholly charitable purpose for the benefit of the public. The advancement of religion has long been recognised as a charitable purpose. There is no presumption that a particular charitable purpose is for the public benefit.

The Charity Commission, as the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales, is responsible for assessing if an institution meets the legal test for charitable status.

There are no plans to change the legal test for charitable status which applies to Churches and other faith-based organisations who express and practise historic orthodox beliefs on the doctrine of marriage.

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